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FREEDOM RIDERS Drama Closes Season At George Street Playhouse

FREEDOM RIDERS Drama Closes Season At George Street Playhouse

Critically acclaimed drama Too Heavy for Your Pocket, winner of the prestigious 2017 Laurents/Hatcher Foundation Award, will open at George Street Playhouse on April 23 and close the Playhouse's 2018-19 season as it prepares to move to its permanent new home at The New Brunswick Performing Arts Center this fall.

Called "illuminating and moving" by the New York Times following a sold-out run at The Roundabout Theatre Company, Jiréh Breon Holder's Too Heavy for Your Pocket takes audiences back to Nashville in the summer of 1961. The Freedom Riders are embarking on a courageous journey into the Deep South. When 20-year-old Bowzie Brandon gives up a life-changing college scholarship to join the movement, he'll have to convince his loved ones-and himself-that shaping the country's future might be worth jeopardizing his own.

George Street's production takes the stage under the direction of LA Williams (Rated Black: An American Requiem at New York Theatre Workshop) and will star Donnell E. Smith (TIME: The Kalief Browder Story on Netflix) as Bowzie Brandon. He appears opposite Joniece Abbott-Pratt (The Good Negro at The Public Theater) as Sally-Mae Carter, Felicia Boswell (Jesus Christ Superstar Live on NBC opposite John Legend and Sara Bareilles) as Evelyn Brandon, and Landon G. Woodson (Back to the Real at Crossroads Theatre Company) as Tony Carter.

"This play is beautiful, passionate, and poetic, all while remaining rooted in very real experiences during a particular period in history," George Street Playhouse Artistic Director David Saint said. "It explores important subjects we may not normally see depicted onstage, but that are still all too relevant today."

Too Heavy for Your Pocket was a recipient of the Laurents/Hatcher Foundation Award, which honors the work of an emerging writer each year.

"I immediately fell in love with the Jiréh Breon Holder's southern voice. I fell in love with the historical aspects of the play. And I also fell in love with the inherent theatricality of Too Heavy for Your Pocket," said director LA Williams, who worked on the play with the writer during its initial development, culminating in a reading at The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.

"Too Heavy for Your Pocket serves as a wonderful piece to close our time here at our temporary venue as we look ahead to our permanent new home at the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center," Saint continued. "This season has been such a banquet of diverse places, ideas, and social issues, and I believe that is what theatre at its best is all about."

The creative team for Too Heavy for Your Pocket will feature Wilson Chin (Set Designer), Asa Benally, (Costume Designer), Jason Lyons (Lighting Designer), Chris Lane (Sound Design), Nikiya Mathis (Wig Designer), Nathan C. Crocker (Dialect Coach), Nat Adderley, Jr. (Vocal Coach/Music Direction), Michael Jerome Johnson (Fight Direction), and Nicole Kuker (Stage Management). Casting by McCorkle Casting, Ltd.

Regular tickets begin as low as $25. Audiences are encouraged to buy now to secure their seats. 2019-20 subscription packages are also now available.

To find tickets or for more information, visit the George Street Playhouse website at, or call the box office at 732-246-7717.

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